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Grow: A Spirit-Empowered Life  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Small Group Bible Study from Influence

1 John 3:17–18 NIV
If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.
As we deepen our relationship with God and progress on our spiritual journey, we begin to realize that simply believing in God or even trusting Him to save is from our sins is only the beginning
Our goal in living a Spirit-empowered life is to grow in Christ. One sign of someone growing in Him is when they put their trust in Him, and put His words into action as they live each day
When you were a child (if you can remember that far back), what was one rule you had a difficult time obeying?
What where the consequences if you did not obey?
As an adult, what is one rule that is difficult for you to obey?
What makes it such a challenge?
One woman shared how she felt God asked her to move to a new location. Has God ever asked you to obey in a big way like that?
What was that experience like?
James 1:22–25 NIV
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.
When God says, “do what the word says” what things come to mind?
In your opinion — what specific actions are most important when it comes to living out your faith?
According to this passage, what does God promise those who obey His Word?
How can any of us fully obey God’s Word?
Is it possible?
Acts 9:10–19 NIV
In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, “Ananias!” “Yes, Lord,” he answered. The Lord told him, “Go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul, for he is praying. In a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come and place his hands on him to restore his sight.” “Lord,” Ananias answered, “I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your holy people in Jerusalem. And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.” But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to proclaim my name to the Gentiles and their kings and to the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.” Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, “Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, and after taking some food, he regained his strength. Saul spent several days with the disciples in Damascus.
What made God’s instructions to Ananias so difficult to obey?
If you had been in Ananias’ shoes, what do you think you would have done?
When Ananias met Saul, how did his words to him reveal his faith?
What if Ananias would have disobeyed the Lord (hypothetically)?
Disobedience of God’s Word does have consequences
God has placed us where we are to make a difference!
Is it easy or difficult for you to believe that about yourself?
God’s greatest desire is to make us more like Jesus
In what way is our obedience important in this process?
In what way has someone in our group blessed you over the last 4-6 months?
Can you share with the group how God has worked in your life over the last 4-6 months (approximately)?
Romans 12:1–2 NIV
Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
If we live in obedience to the lifestyle described in this passage, how would it impact our witness to others?
Who are you praying for, that they would come to know Jesus?
Keep praying…don’t quit
What are you willing to do/sacrifice in order to share Jesus’ love with them?
Sometimes it means patiently waiting, in faith believing
Listen for the voice of God as you study His Word and seek Him
Write down what you hear and see — what God does — and what you do in obedience to His voice this week.
Read and study
Listen for the voice of God as you study His Word and seek Him
Write down what you hear and see — what God does — and what you do in obedience to His voice this week.
Colossians 3:1–2 NIV
Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.
What does it mean to you to “set your mind on things above?” Why can this be a challenge?
Colossians 3:5–7 NIV
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived.
What are some things you “used to walk in” and how has walking with Jesus changed how you live? Are there still some old ways that you need to overcome? Take time now to pray and seek the power of the Holy Spirit to help you overcome these things
Colossians 3:8–10 NIV
But now you must also rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.
Why should we rid ourselves of these things? How is your “new self” different from the person you once were?
Colossians 3:12–14 NIV
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Which of the above traits stands out most to you? How might we find strength to forgive by reflecting on the forgiveness we have received from God?
Colossians 3:15–18 NIV
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.
How is gratitude the best attitude? How might your gratitude for God’s work in your life help someone else grow in Him too?
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